As I mentioned in yesterday’s Top 10 Tuesday post, I had to change this week’s topic slightly to avoid posting twice in a row on the exact same subject. I decided to switch today’s post to the top 5 book-related things that I’m thankful for instead, to still go with the Thanksgiving theme. Reading has always been very important to me, and I’m lucky enough to have people in my life who support my interest. Here are five of the people or other book-related things that I am most thankful for.
Top 5 Wednesday is a meme created by Gingerreadslainey on Youtube, and is now hosted by Sam at ThoughtsOnTomes. The official GoodReads group with the weekly topics can be found here.
1) My Parents
Reading and books have always been a major part of my household. My mom has always been a huge reader, and my dad to a lesser extent. Reading was always something that we did together when my brother and I were kids. My parents would often read to us, or we would read to them. We were given books as treats and gifts. Almost every time my dad came home from a business trip, he brought me one of those books that talk or make sound effects at certain points in the story. Reading was always a favourite activity and always presented as something fun to do, and not as a chore like I’ve seen some people believe. I’m thankful to my parents for instilling a love of reading and making books such a huge part of my life.
2) My School Librarians
I had two very influential school librarians in elementary school, both of whom I was terrified of when I was in school. My first school librarian was a big, loud man who was great with kids, but I was scared of him because I always thought he was yelling. I was an incredibly shy child and hated loud voices. This librarian let my mom volunteer to help out in the library, and allowed me to spend my recesses there too. He was also the man who read us the first paragraphs of Harry Potter and A Series of Unfortunate Events, which introduced me to two of my favourite series. The second school librarian I have in mind was also my eighth grade teacher, and I was also nervous around her because she seemed very strict. However, she was extremely knowledgeable about books and was great at giving recommendations. She introduced me to the Pendragon series, which also became a favourite. I’m thankful to both of them for teaching me about how libraries work and introducing me to many of my favourite books.
3) My Best Friend
I’m lucky enough to have a best friend who was just as strongly interested in books as I am, although our tastes are pretty different. We were both always really into the classics (at least abridged versions), and I think in some ways that motivated both of us to branch out and try some of them. One of our favourite things to do together is to visit the local bookstore, where were can both spend hours just browsing the shelves and talking about books. I’ve had other friends over the years who shared my interest in many books, especially Harry Potter, but none have been willing to spend so long just wandering through bookstores. I am thankful for my best friend and how we have introduced each other to so many great books over the years.
4) Reading Challenges
Participating in reading challenges over the past three years has brought me back into reading in a huge way. Even though I’ve always loved it, I strayed away from reading for fun while in post-secondary education since I had so little time to devote to the books I wanted to read for myself. I took on my first reading challenge in 2015 in a very casual way, just to see if I could do it and I found it a great motivator. Not only did I discover many new books, but there was something strangely satisfying about being able to cross items off the list. Since then, I have participated in multiple category-based challenges each year, and it has been a lot of fun! It can be a bit stressful at times if I feel like I’m falling behind on my total for the year, but I love looking for new books and the scavenger hunt aspect of trying to fit everything in. Plus, posting about the books I’m reading online gives me a built-in conversation topic, since everyone seems to ask what I’m reading or what books are coming up next. I’m already looking forward to next year’s challenges! I’m thankful for reading challenges for giving me motivation to read more and to try new books.
5) Goodreads and the Online Book Community
I’ve always enjoyed participating in online communities about my favourite topics, and would gladly choose Goodreads and other online discussions over an in-person book club just due to time constraints. I’ve had a lot of fun browsing Goodreads for recommendations and reading reviews of the books I’m interested in. I can easily spend hours on Goodreads just browsing, even if it’s just my own massive TBR list. I’ve also discovered some great blogs and vlog channels that I love keeping up with. When I’m not reading books of my own, I often like reading blogs or watching videos about a variety of book-related topics. I also think online communities are a great way for people to connect over shared interests, and even to discuss some of our unpopular opinions. I’m thankful for Goodreads and other online communities because it gives me the chance to discuss books with many others around the world!